Friday, November 22, 2019

50/50 Friday - Book Read in a Day/Book You DNFed

50/50 Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Carrie @ The Butterfly Reader.

What is 50/50 Friday?
Everyone has a favorite and then we also have something we dislike. Like a coin, there are two sides to every question. Example: best sequel you've read/worst sequel you've read. So that's what 50/50 Friday is all about. Carrie posts a new topic every Friday so be sure to check out her post to see the topic for the following week!

Topic for the Week
Book Read in a Day/Book You DNFed

Book Read in a Day
The last book I read in a day (that wasn't a novella or a graphic novel) was Rules for Vanishing by Kate Alice Marshall. I read it as an ARC a few weeks before it released and couldn't stop reading!

Book You DNFed
The sad thing is I was really looking forward to The Twisted Ones by T. Kingfisher but it was so slow and boring and not at all what I was expecting. 

Topic For Next Week
Favorite/Least Favorite YA Paranormal Book

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Throwback Thursday Book Edition - 21 November 2013

Welcome to Throwback Thursday: Book Edition!

How It Works:
Each week we'll go through our Goodreads stats and throwback to what book we were reading on that specific date years earlier and what we thought about it then.

Dark Witch
The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy Book 1
by Nora Roberts
Format I Read In: Paperback
Pages: 342
Published: October 29, 2019 by Berkley

With indifferent parents, Iona Sheehan grew up craving devotion and acceptance. From her maternal grandmother, she learned where to find both: a land of lush forests, dazzling lakes, and centuries-old legends.


County Mayo, to be exact. Where her ancestors’ blood and magic have flowed through generations—and where her destiny awaits.
With indifferent parents, Iona Sheehan grew up craving devotion and acceptance. From her maternal grandmother, she learned where to find both: a land of lush forests, dazzling lakes, and centuries-old legends.


County Mayo, to be exact. Where her ancestors’ blood and magic have flowed through generations—and where her destiny awaits.

Iona arrives in Ireland with nothing but her Nan’s directions, an unfailingly optimistic attitude, and an innate talent with horses. Not far from the luxurious castle where she is spending a week, she finds her cousins, Branna and Connor O’Dwyer. And since family is family, they invite her into their home and their lives.

When Iona lands a job at the local stables, she meets the owner, Boyle McGrath. Cowboy, pirate, wild tribal horsemen, he’s three of her biggest fantasy weaknesses all in one big, bold package.

Iona realizes that here she can make a home for herself—and live her life as she wants, even if that means falling head over heels for Boyle. But nothing is as it seems. An ancient evil has wound its way around Iona’s family tree and must be defeated. Family and friends will fight with each other and for each other to keep the promise of hope—and love—alive…

Throwback Questions
Started Reading: November 19, 2013

Finished Reading: November 23, 2013

My Rating: 5 Stars

Shelved as on Goodreads: Paranormal, Witches

Have You Reread This Book?: No

Would You Reread This Book?: Yes

Do You Still Own This Book?: Yes

Have I Read Other Books By This Author Since Reading This Book?: Yes

Things You Remember Liking About this Book:
The setting (County Mayo Ireland), the Wiccan/witchcraft influences, Iona's found family (both biological and friends), Iona and Boyle's chemistry.

Favorite Character:

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

I Can't Wait For... Where Dreams Descend

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released.

The release date for this one is still a long way off but I was sold when they said "The Phantom of the Opera meets Moulin Rouge"...

Where Dreams Descend
Kingdom of Cards Book 1
by Janella Angeles
YA, Fantasy
eBook, Hardcover, Audiobook, 464 Pages
June 2, 2020 by Wednesday Books


In a city covered in ice and ruin, a group of magicians face off in a daring game of magical feats to find the next headliner of the Conquering Circus, only to find themselves under the threat of an unseen danger striking behind the scenes.

As each act becomes more and more risky and the number of missing magicians piles up, three are forced to reckon with their secrets before the darkness comes for them next.

The Star: Kallia, a powerful showgirl out to prove she’s the best no matter the cost

The Master: Jack, the enigmatic keeper of the club, and more than one lie told

The Magician: Demarco, the brooding judge with a dark past he can no longer hide

Where Dreams Descend is the startling and romantic first book in Janella Angeles’ debut Kingdom of Cards fantasy duology where magic is both celebrated and feared, and no heart is left unscathed.

What do you think? Will you be checking this one out? 

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Book Review: CROWN OF OBLIVION by Julie Eshbaugh

Crown of Oblivion
Julie Eshbaugh
November 12, 2019
eBook, Hardcover, 480 pages

Astrid is the surrogate for Princess Renya, which means she bears the physical punishment if Renya steps out of line. Astrid has no choice—she and her family are Outsiders, the lower class of people without magic and without citizenship.

But there is a way out of this life—competing in the deadly Race of Oblivion. To enter the race, an Outsider is administered the drug Oblivion, which wipes their memory clear of their past as they enter a new world with nothing to help them but a slip of paper bearing their name and the first clue. It’s not as simple as solving a puzzle, however—for a majority of the contestants, the race ends in death. But winning would mean not only freedom for Astrid, but citizenship and health care for her entire family. With a dying father to think of, Astrid is desperate to prevail.

From the beginning, the race is filled with twists and turns. One of them is Darius, a fellow racer Astrid meets but isn’t sure she can trust. Though they team up in the race, as Astrid’s memories begin to resurface, she remembers just who he was to her—a scorned foe who may want revenge. Astrid also starts to notice she has powers no Outsider should—which could help her win the race, but also make her a target if anyone finds out. With stakes that couldn’t be higher, Astrid must decide what is more important: risking her life to remember the mysteries of the past, or playing a cutthroat game in order to win her—and her family’s—freedom.
My Review:
Four years ago Astrid's brother Jayden ran away, escaping his indenture as the prince's surrogate. Astrid, Princess Renya's surrogate nearly died from the beating she took that night.

Now, with her father sick and needing medical attention and her younger brother depending on her, Astrid is thisclose to getting the King's decree allowing her father to get the treatment he needs.

But when tragedy strikes, Astrid is pushed to enter the Race of Oblivion, a life-or-death dangerous race/scavenger-like-hunt across the kingdom where the entrants are given a memory-erasing drug and the final outcome is death, a longer indenture to the king, or - for one lucky winner - citizenship for the winner's whole family.

When Astrid awakens in the race amid competitors who would kill her as soon as look at her, the unexpected help of a young man who seems so familiar to her, and a power she shouldn't have giving her an advantage the stakes are about to get a whole lot higher. 

Crown of Oblivion was so easy to get caught up in. I loved Astrid right from the start and was rooting for her all the way.

I thought the Race of Oblivion, it's memory-erasing drug administered by masked people, and the terrain the race spread across were really interesting and inventive.

There's nervous tension, danger, intrigue, magic, and adventure in these pages that will keep you riveted from start to finish. 

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed Crown of Oblivion and highly recommend it to anyone seeking a strong female lead and a unique life-or-death adventure.

My Rating:
5 of 5 Stars!

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Book Review: Gravemaidens by Kelly Coon

Gravemaidens Duology #1
Kelly Coon
October 29, 2019
Delacorte Press
eBook, Hardcover, audiobook 416 pages

The start of a fierce fantasy duology about three maidens who are chosen for their land's greatest honor...and one girl determined to save her sister from the grave.

In the walled city-state of Alu, Kammani wants nothing more than to become the accomplished healer her father used to be before her family was cast out of their privileged life in shame.

When Alu's ruler falls deathly ill, Kammani’s beautiful little sister, Nanaea, is chosen as one of three sacred maidens to join him in the afterlife. It’s an honor. A tradition. And Nanaea believes it is her chance to live an even grander life than the one that was stolen from her.

But Kammani sees the selection for what it really is—a death sentence.

Desperate to save her sister, Kammani schemes her way into the palace to heal the ruler. There she discovers more danger lurking in the sand-stone corridors than she could have ever imagined and that her own life—and heart—are at stake. But Kammani will stop at nothing to dig up the palace’s buried secrets even if it means sacrificing everything…including herself.
My Review:
I was looking forward to this one from the first time I saw the title and then when I saw the cover... WOW!

Some books have gorgeous covers but lackluster stories but thankfully Gravemaidens does not fit into that category because I was hooked on this story from the get-go. Sisters Kammani and Nanaea couldn't be more different but their relationship is one I wished I had with my own sister. 

Kammani will do anything to save Nanaea from being sacrificed in a horrific tradition that everyone else sees as an honor. 

I loved this one from start to finish and I can't wait to read the conclusion of this duology!

My Rating:
4 of 5 Stars!

Friday, November 8, 2019

Book Review: Across A Broken Shore by Amy Trueblood

Across A Broken Shore
Amy Trueblood
November 5, 2019
eBook, Paperback, 360 pages

A Winter 2020 Junior Library Guild Selection.

The last thing eighteen-year-old Wilhelmina “Willa” MacCarthy wants is to be a nun. It’s 1936, and as the only daughter amongst four sons, her Irish–Catholic family is counting on her to take her vows—but Willa’s found another calling. Each day she sneaks away to help Doctor Katherine Winston in her medical clinic in San Francisco’s Richmond District.

Keeping secrets from her family only becomes more complicated when Willa agrees to help the doctor at a field hospital near the new bridge being built over the Golden Gate. Willa thinks she can handle her new chaotic life, but as she draws closer to a dashing young ironworker and risks grow at the bridge, she discovers that hiding from what she truly wants may be her biggest lie of all.

My Review:
I love historical fiction and Across A Broken Shore will take you back to 1930s San Fransico and take you on a coming of age journey as Willa discovers who she is and what she really wants out of life. 

This book will appeal to anyone that has ever felt pressured to pursue a certain path by their family. It's beautifully written and transporting. 

This is my first book by this author and I went into it not remembering what it was about (and not reading the blurb) and I really enjoyed it. My only comment is on the flow of the story, it skipped ahead from one major plot point to another with little in between at times. 

Overall, if you like historical fiction with inspiring, strong female leads you will enjoy Across A Broken Shore!

My Rating:
4 of 5 Stars!

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Book Review: Find Me Their Bones by Sara Wolf

Find Me Their Bones
Bring Me Their Hearts Book 2
Sara Wolf
November 5, 2019
Entangled Teen
eBook, Hardcover, audiobook 400 pages

No one can save her.

In order to protect Prince Lucien d’Malvane’s heart, Zera had to betray him. Now, he hates the sight of her. Trapped in Cavanos as a prisoner of the king, she awaits the inevitable moment her witch severs their magical connection and finally ends her life.

But fate isn't ready to give her up just yet.

With freedom coming from the most unlikely of sources, Zera is given a second chance at life as a Heartless. But it comes with a terrible price. As the king mobilizes his army to march against the witches, Zera must tame an elusive and deadly valkerax trapped in the tunnels underneath the city if she wants to regain her humanity.

Winning over a bloodthirsty valkerax? Hard. Winning back her friends before war breaks out? A little harder.

But a Heartless winning back Prince Lucien’s heart?

The hardest thing she’s ever done.

My Review:
Wow! I liked this one so much more than the first book. While the first book was a cover-request that was an okay read for me, this one kept my interest to the end. 

Zera is back, but now she has to face Lucien and the realization that her secret is out. And with the emergence of someone thought long dead, her world and that of everyone around her is about to be turned on its' head. 

The author left us with a cliffhanger at the end of book one, and there will be a cliffhanger at the end of this one that will leave you craving for the third and final installment right away. I liked the addition of the mythology and new creatures in this book, I thought they really added to the story.

Overall, this is one of those follow up books that is definitely worth reading even if you didn't love-love the first book. 

My Rating:
4 of 5 Stars!